Wednesday 29 October 2014

Civray draws the crowds

Every year, in late October, Maison Perrin hosts a Marché à la Ferme in the hamlet of Civray. That's about five kilometres away from us as the crow flies, but not as the grotesquely-overfed duck staggers as it's mostly uphill. The speciality of the house is foie gras, and I know many find the whole business of foie gras unacceptably cruel, but I must say the ducks in question appear not in be any distress as they sit, getting fatter and doing nothing but eat, sleep and excrete. And I'm rather partial to foie gras.

M. Charcellay of Maison Perrin with customers in front of Laurent Joumier's goat cheese stall from Pré. The Joumiers have a new baby daughter, Clémence, who is now sleeping through the night, we are told.
It was just approaching lunchtime as we set off for the farm, and some of those not lunching were just about to depart, so we managed to park pretty easily not far from the gate. That was useful in view of the crowd!

The crowd in the courtyard at Maison Perrin

The big draw of the day is the repas - a slap-up lunch. The queue to pay for this meal was extensive on Sunday, and quite a few come long distances for the meal alone.

Pay here for lunch.
Meanwhile, on sale were wines from Vouvray, Bourgueil and Chinon (we bought some of that, to encourage them)...

very popular, not even a chance to say hello, never mind ordering anyrhing!
local honey from M. Hervé ...

no shortage here
...jam, walnut oil, poires tapées (dried, flattened pears, we still have some from about four years ago), snails, charcuterie of the duck kind and oven ready birds, almost all sold out, pottery...

Some of Magali Desroches' lovely work, elegantly displayed

and dairy products from Fromagerie Maurice and La Borde staffed with great dignity by a female person who may only have been eight years old but she knew how to operate a till and do sums, which is better than one of the Civray boys two years ago!

All in all 'twere a reet good do.


Susan said...

Must have just missed you. The honey is excellent -- I bought some from him at L'Art et Lard. I like his approach -- each hive is bottled seperately as it has its own character and he has no idea what they've been feeding on mostly. I also bought a 5kg bag of flour. I don't think her flour is as good as the people from Nouans, but they don't do the markets, so this is a good substitute. I 'interviewed' Grég the snail farmer for the blog and ordered a fresh foie gras which I am going to be shown how to prep.

Susan said...

PS My laitière (mother of the 8 year old) tells me that she did very well out of the day, which is good to hear.

Jean said...

We bought some honey and some foie gras products, plus a nice plump magret. A young girl served us with the honey and she was very efficient - the same one, possibly.
There were no crowds when we arrived early afternoon, but a huge racket coming from the restaurant tent!
It was indeed a reet good do. I can't understand how we've missed it in previous years - unless by not being here on the right day.

GaynorB said...

Looks interesting. I'm not too keen on foie gras but could be tempted by many of the other delights you mention.

Perhaps next year...

Betty Carlson said...

Thank you for your apology for foie gras! I love it too and don't want to feel guilty about eating it (and don't do, for the most part!)